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Today in Russian Business – Nov 16, 2011

According to the Russo-British Chamber of Commerce, current economic conditions in the EU are making Russia an attractive option for British companies.  But capital flight outflows are persisting, leading to reports that banks may need emergency state support to help them meet borrowing needs this year, and former Bank of Moscow head, Andrei Borodin, alleges that the government has illegally seized billions of dollars worth of assets from exiles. President Dmitry Medvedev has criticised local authorities for limiting competition in housing construction, and discussed the provision of state-backed mortgages for low-income borrowers.  Why have doctors and teachers been omitted from Vladimir Putin’s modernisation stipend plan?  The Federal Customs Service has halted its servicing of online paymentswith stunning abruptness’.  Norilsk Nickel is planning to borrow up to $2.3 billion fromSberbank.  RFE/RL says that the Berezovsky/Abramovich court case is ‘providing a view into how Putin remade Russia into an authoritarian state, overseeing the state’s appropriation of formerly private media, oil, and other industries as he consolidated his power.